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How does blood type influence coronavirus?

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A study by European scientists is the first to document a strong statistical link between genetic variations and Covid-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. Having Type A blood was linked to a 50 percent increase in the likelihood that a patient would need to get oxygen or to go on a ventilator, according to the new study. (NYTimes, June 5, 2020)

Many people do not know their blood type as it is not routinely checked except in certain circumstances in the newborn nursery, if you need a blood transfusion or if you donate blood. If you think you have had it checked for a medical reason, you can contact our office so we can check your records. We can of course check your blood type if you are due for routine labs, but at this point we wouldn’t recommend an extra lab draw just to check your blood type. If you do want to know, you can get a home test kit that offers immediate results. In a study with almost 3000 of these kits compared to traditional blood type testing, this kit was shown to be 99.9 percent accurate as long as the instructions were carefully followed. Of note, the inaccuracies that did occur were not in the ABO typing, but rather tended to relate to Rhesus-D factor (whether the blood is positive or negative), so are less important if you are purely curious to know if you’re at increased risk because you have type A blood. (June 10, 2020)